Author Topic: REVIEW: Dawn of Twlight (by Coric)  (Read 779 times)

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REVIEW: Dawn of Twlight (by Coric)
« on: January 21, 2009, 06:57:28 PM »
Dawn of Twilight
Author:  Coric (a.k.a. Bryan SM)
Imported art:  No
# of dungeons:  1
Additional documentation:  Yes (dread.txt & tutor.txt)

Review by: Dan Autery

When I play through a tutorial, I don't usually do it the same as I would a regular game. That was my first mistake with "Dawn of Twilight". It's not an easy walk-through. If not for the tutor.txt (which is larger than the game), and the notes in the NL, Dawn can easily be taken as a game in itself (which, in fact, it is).

What the tutorial is intended for is to explain virtually every type of event that can be found in FRUA. It does this, not with long-winded, technical and confusing explanations, but by using the events in an actual game setting. A designer can print out the tutor.txt and use it as he or she looks through the game to see how the events were set up.

Even for those who aren't interested in tutorials, I still recommend "Dawn of Twilight". For one, it's a very well done prequel to Coric's huge upcoming adventure, "Minions of Twilight". The game also offers several innovative concepts -- giving players the option of having random combat as the game begins, using text to simulate not only the npc conversations, but the party's reply, and an excellent approach to keeping the major villain alive for future battles.

The game itself has few faults and shows its author to have an excellent understanding of the UA mechanics. The only glitch I could find was an "outdoor backdrop" located on one square inside the Guardian Complex.

I was rather amazed out how much the author managed to squeeze into one dungeon. Although the text files indicate the game could be played in an hour (more with random combat), it took me six with a fairly powerful party. The random combats (if chosen) are well-balanced, though slightly more frequent than I normally prefer (although they're set for a high number of steps, the chance of them happening is pretty high as well).

This, combined with few places for the party to rest (and get spells), makes for a challenging -- if moderately frustrating -- beginning. Also, if you choose to enter the citadel (near the endgame), you'll find your party both unable to rest and unable to escape (until after the final battle)...and those Dread Guardians are tough!

Still, Dawn of Twilight does what few games, and even fewer tutorials, have accomplished; it draws you into the story. It makes you feel the tension, worry over your party's success, and fear the aspect of facing the major villain again. Finally, it gives you a sense of accomplishment when (or if) your party survives to the end game.

Overall, I highly recommend this one.

<Note: The game files for "Dawn of Twilight" can be found in UANL3>

Story execution:  A
Encounters:  A-
Graphics:  N/A 
Bug Control:  A
Innovativity:  A+
Overall:  A
« Last Edit: January 29, 2009, 06:45:41 PM by Olivier Leroux »

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